The Reformed Pastor…Today

“I have made, next to the Bible, Baxter’s Reformed Pastor my rule as regards the object of my ministry. It were well if that volume were often read by all our pastors.”

Those were the dying words of John Angell James. J. I. Packer tells us that James would read Baxter on Saturday evenings, to prepare himself for Sunday. Long before there was a man named N. T. Wright, the then Bishop of Durham (1925), H. Hensley Henson, said, “The Reformed Pastor is the best manual of the clergyman’s duty in the language, because it leaves on the reader’s mind an ineffaceable impression of the sublimity and awfulness of spiritual ministry.” Packer reminds us that Spurgeon “used frequently to have his wife read it to him on Sunday evenings, when the day’s preaching was done.” Such is the nature of a work that has endured many editions and reprints since it was first published in 1656 for a minister’s meeting in Worcestershire. The theme of this week will be Richard Baxter’s monumental pastoral treatise The Reformed Pastor. Our contributors will discuss this book’s overall value to their respective ministries and the impact that this work has had in the shaping and refining of their pastoral labors (readers are encouraged to discuss this theme in the comments section). It was Packer who raised the able question we should all consider, “Has Baxter’s book a ministry to ministers today?”

2 responses to this post.

  1. I’ve been enjoying your blog, and look forward to your thoughts on Baxter’s book. Thanks.

  2. Great idea

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